New GOP CR cuts $12 billion in one week

posted at 12:15 pm on April 5, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

With the White House preparing to go to the mattresses with a government shutdown and Senate Democrats still refusing to put together any kind of budget, House Republicans have offered a one-week continuing resolution to buy extra mediation time.  Appropriations Chair Hal Rogers released the plan yesterday, which comes up with a hefty cut in spending but avoids some of the rider issues to which Barack Obama has objected.  It also positions any further negotiations more firmly on Republican ground:

House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers today introduced another temporary funding measure – known as a Continuing Resolution (CR) – to prevent a government shutdown for an additional week while cutting a total of $12 billion in discretionary spending. The measure also includes funding for the Department of Defense for the remainder of the current fiscal year. …

“We cannot let the unruly actions of one person cause a government-wide shutdown and unravel the efforts House Republicans have made to significantly reduce spending and rein in our historic deficits. Therefore, I am introducing a short-term continuing resolution today to keep the government open for another week. This bill will cut $12 billion to help chip away at ballooning budgets, and includes responsible funding for our national defense for the rest of the fiscal year.

“This bill is not the preferable way to go forward, and I would greatly prefer to come to a final agreement with the Senate to put this long-overdue budget work behind us. However, we must maintain critical programs and services for the American people and protect our nation’s financial future. This legislation give us this option, while exacting a price for Leader Reid’s delays and allowing time to finally begin honest negotiations.”

The cuts get spread across the entire federal government, including Defense, an effort to demonstrate that conservatives will sacrifice on their priorities to ensure reductions in government spending.  Here is the brief list of cuts, with more detail at the Appropriations site:

  • Agriculture – $1.4 billion
  • Commerce/Science/Justice – $430 million
  • Energy and Water – $976 million
  • Military Construction/Veterans Affairs – $979 million
  • Financial Services – $763 million
  • Homeland Security – $1.4 billion
  • Interior – $1.27 billion
  • Labor/HHS – $2.5 billion
  • State/Foreign Operations – $832 million
  • Transportation/HUD – $2.7 billion

That’s a lengthy list that spreads the pain fairly equally.  Defense, however, takes more cuts than any, with rescissions of earmarks alone accounting for over $4 billion in reductions.  However, the House bill would fund Defense for the full year, not just the one week period following the expiration of the current CR.  Rogers reduced Pentagon funding by 2.9% from Obama’s FY2011 request, which still amounts to an increase of 1.5% from FY2010 ($7 billion).

Politically, that’s a smart move.  That takes the “our troops won’t get paid” argument off the table for any future showdowns over the budget, and locks in the spending cuts in the area where Democrats love to challenge the GOP.  Instead, Republicans can claim that they have already addressed their own sacred cows and challenge Democrats to do the same.

My friend Rob Neppell e-mails me to point out a few more items about the bill:

It does NOT appear to contain any of the controversial riders (defund NPR, defund planned parenthood, etc.) although I may be missing them.  Assuming I’m not, I think I get the strategy here: they’re forcing military / defense spending off the table. If Reid/Obama pass this, a week from now they’ll be negotiating weaker as any government shutdown won’t result in unpaid military personnel. If they refuse to pass it, they’re clearly choosing shutdown over a non-controversial CR (i.e. one that doesn’t have the riders).

A search of the bill shows no reference to NPR, PBS, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, or Planned Parenthood, so it appears that Rob is right. It also mentions nothing specifically about abortion at all. It’s an attempt to pass a clean CR without any hooks for demagoguery that will secure final funding for the Pentagon and give Congress and the White House a week to concentrate on everything else.

It’s not the best solution to the standoff; that’s still a rational budget that substantially cuts government spending. This CR is a pretty good fallback position this week, and perhaps even more so if Harry Reid and Barack Obama refuse to consider it. If they take the bait, the shutdown and any interruption in military issues will be their responsibility — and the Republican-led House will show once again that it can pass budgets, a claim that the previous House majority couldn’t or wouldn’t do even with total control in Washington.


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shut it

james23 on April 5, 2011 at 12:17 PM

“Leave the gun… take the canolli…”

Khun Joe on April 5, 2011 at 12:17 PM

The GOP is using strategy?

Maybe there’s hope for the Republic after all.

Rebar on April 5, 2011 at 12:19 PM

Playing a good game of checkers with these CRs in my opinion given they only control one of three levers of budgetary power, but I really want to get to the Chess game that is Ryan’s 2012 budget.

WashJeff on April 5, 2011 at 12:21 PM

I see a stand off and a shut down soon.

If the dems say no, as I also did a quicky search for NPR and others and I didn’t find anything, it is going to look bad for them.

So they either say yes and get nothing or they say no and tick off the nation more so than they already are. We all know what they are going to do.

*smiles*

upinak on April 5, 2011 at 12:22 PM

If the government shuts down, we’re going to see Mrs. Obama with the Today Show preparing a “state dinner” meal just like Abby Bartlet on “West Wing”.

myrenovations on April 5, 2011 at 12:22 PM

Barry will veto anything sent to him. He needs a shutdown to jump start his campaign.

Knucklehead on April 5, 2011 at 12:23 PM

Now we will see if the mouse tries to take the cheese out of the trap…

right2bright on April 5, 2011 at 12:23 PM

WashJeff on April 5, 2011 at 12:21 PM

Agreed.

ladyingray on April 5, 2011 at 12:23 PM

Give credit to Boehner, a little more clever than I expected.

right2bright on April 5, 2011 at 12:24 PM

Playing a good game of checkers with these CRs in my opinion given they only control one of three levers of budgetary power, but I really want to get to the Chess game that is Ryan’s 2012 budget.

WashJeff on April 5, 2011 at 12:21 PM

Ah, but the point of the checkers game is to decide who goes first in the chess game.

Count to 10 on April 5, 2011 at 12:25 PM

Barry will veto anything sent to him. He needs a shutdown to jump start his campaign.

Knucklehead on April 5, 2011 at 12:23 PM

He wants something to campaign against, cause he surely does not want to define what he is for…when it comes to budgetary matters at least.

WashJeff on April 5, 2011 at 12:26 PM

When the government shuts down and people start whining about Republicans, perhaps the Pubs can take that opportunity to remind everyone that the Dims hold the majority in the Senate. They’re acting like the minority party now, even though they hold the numerical advantage. That is something that I’m NOT seeing conveyed in most stories…

joejm65 on April 5, 2011 at 12:26 PM

He wants something to campaign against, cause he surely does not want to define what he is for…when it comes to budgetary matters at least.

WashJeff on April 5, 2011 at 12:26 PM

You can’t campaign against yourself. Obama is looking for that one scapegoat and we all know this isn’t it.

upinak on April 5, 2011 at 12:27 PM

As much as I want NPR and PP to be defunded, I want even more the dems to eat crow.
This is the big problem for the dems: With what is happening in Wisc. and other places, the unions can’t afford to have the Republicans take control of the budget. It will show that the Republicans are doing the right thing, that budget restraint is the right method…but the dems want and need a budget, and this is as good as it gets for them.
Union will put pressure to say no
dem leaders will put pressure to say yes
I think the union will win, and Obama refuses the budget…he will demand some union bone before passing the budget.

right2bright on April 5, 2011 at 12:29 PM

SHUT IT DOWN!

GarandFan on April 5, 2011 at 12:30 PM

Everything Obama does is viewed through the prisim of a reelection campaign.

Wisconsin? Stir up the base. His people had their fingers all over that.

Lybia? Wag the dog.

Government shutdown? It worked in the past. When you have the media on your side, all things are possible.

Vince on April 5, 2011 at 12:31 PM

Which party is OBSTRUCTIONIST now?

fossten on April 5, 2011 at 12:34 PM

The White House has rejected the offer. (rumored anyway)

Les in NC on April 5, 2011 at 12:34 PM

A search of the bill shows no reference to NPR, PBS, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, or Planned Parenthood

That is okay, if this CR passes Pence has a bill ready to go to address the abortion issue. Looks like a pretty good plan to fund defense and get it off the table.

fourdeucer on April 5, 2011 at 12:36 PM

Don’t you just love now how bho is getting up at night worrying about the budget? First thing in the morning he starts worrying about the budget that is to shutdown Friday! bho makes me sick and so do the d’s!
L

letget on April 5, 2011 at 12:36 PM

Ah, but the point of the checkers game is to decide who goes first in the chess game.

Count to 10 on April 5, 2011 at 12:25 PM

It will determine who seems more reasonable to the public, thus you has the upperhand in the chess game. I think the GOP is doing well playing to the disinterested middle. Where the game is all perception and very little substance.

WashJeff on April 5, 2011 at 12:38 PM

Don’t you just love now how bho is getting up at night worrying about the budget? First thing in the morning he starts worrying about the budget that is to shutdown Friday! bho makes me sick and so do the d’s!
L

letget on April 5, 2011 at 12:36 PM

Well, Obamacare should make you feel better./

Les in NC on April 5, 2011 at 12:39 PM

When, precisely, was the 90′s-era shutdown? Because I joined the Navy in Jun of ’94 and we never lost a paycheck. I was only 18, but I do remember all of the older guys grumbling about Clinton, but we got our paychecks and annual raises-even if they were a tad miserly.

I’m pretty positive that the military guys still get paid and get services if there is a shutdown, it is all part of the “mandatory spending” that the feds must do. They still take in taxes….I don’t know where this meme about soldiers not getting paid came from. I realize that, since I was in boot camp in June, I might have missed the whole ordeal, but I figured I would have at least HEARD about it later.

Mord on April 5, 2011 at 12:39 PM

12B$/week x 52wks/yr = 624B$/yr

Keep’em coming!

tomg51 on April 5, 2011 at 12:39 PM

Keep it up GOP. I rarely say it, but y’all doin well

blatantblue on April 5, 2011 at 12:40 PM

The White House has rejected the offer. (rumored anyway)

Les in NC on April 5, 2011 at 12:34 PM

Boehner’s office says no deal was reached in White House talks

I read that before Ed put up this post. Obama says no deal or am I not reading it right?

Knucklehead on April 5, 2011 at 12:45 PM

Les in NC@12:39,
Don’t think so, I am one of those ‘old’ folks that need to get my end of life yearly talk with the doctor under bhocare mandate!
L

letget on April 5, 2011 at 12:46 PM

Knucklehead on April 5, 2011 at 12:45 PM

Read the same article. Also heard the rumored rejection on FOX News.

Les in NC on April 5, 2011 at 12:47 PM

No matter which way the Democrats go on this, it will be a Pyrrhic victory for them.

unclesmrgol on April 5, 2011 at 12:49 PM

At what point will the people REALLY say “this is enough” and start a significant tax revolt? are there enough patriots left who are willing to go to jail or loose their credit score? Or are we going to keep passing the buck down the road? What kind of life will the kids now in kindergarten have under a tremendously oppressive debt? Will the Chinese or the World bank be telling them how to live their lives and how many children they are allowed to have?

neuquenguy on April 5, 2011 at 12:49 PM

Go for the shut down! Then when the Dems are on the ropes, slam them with everything. No PP, No NPR, No Dept. of Ed!

Iblis on April 5, 2011 at 12:51 PM

Mord on April 5, 2011 at 12:39 PM

As I understand it from the civil side of DoD having gone through that, we had a breakdown into the ‘necessary’ people who had to show up but would not be paid until funds became available. Everyone else would stay home and not get the promise of pay. Basically it meant that you coasted on savings for the period involved… and then got a larger paycheck on the next pay period. That shutdown wasn’t that long… a longer one would be a problem for the ‘voluntary’ parts of the US government that Congress doesn’t have to fund.

If you cut off the air supply to those long enough, people start to leave… and without anyone to process forms and do stuff you start to wonder if you need them at all…

ajacksonian on April 5, 2011 at 12:54 PM

Maybe naive Barry the Ø will listen to and believe The Clenis that a government shutdown won’t materially harm the economic “recovery.”

ExpressoBold on April 5, 2011 at 12:56 PM

Who is the party of NO now?

cartooner on April 5, 2011 at 12:56 PM

Labor/HHS – $2.5 billion

OH MY GOD. This will kill 15,000 old people and children!!!!
– MSM

angryed on April 5, 2011 at 1:01 PM

They should not have cut defense, when questioned about it they should then say, “You want to cut defense spending when Obama just launched a third war?”

Slowburn on April 5, 2011 at 1:02 PM

The Dems would not produce a budget last year.
The Senate Dems will not produce one this year.

The R’s have done their job by passing a budget.

Where is Obama’s leadership? He is nowhere to be found.

It sounds to me like the Dems have been planning to shut down the government just so they can blame it on the Republicans.

They are just like the fleabaggers, total dereliction of duty.

The Rock on April 5, 2011 at 1:02 PM

Why does this have to be so hard? Just cut 2% from every agency. 2% of $3T is $60B.

And I don’t care how much spin the MSM puts on it, most people will understand that cutting a budget by 2% is not the end of the world.

angryed on April 5, 2011 at 1:03 PM

Chicken for the last meal. OK… Someone had to serve it up.

IMHO, the GOP ought to go over the Obamacrats heads and start offering options to taxpayers — For example, you can direct X% of your tax dollars up to $YYYY to Planned Parenthood and/or your State’s Medicaid program, or some other worthy health care cause (Prostate Research, Breast Cancer, etc). PP could end up with more $$$ or not. Let the taxpayers, not politicians, decide.

Ditto for Education (Dept of Ed/Local Schools/Charter Schools/etc), Transportation (High Speed Rail/Highways/PotHoles), etc, etc. Offer the option for concerned taxpayers to donate more to any of these causes if they wish.

Fact, there’s only so much taxpayer dollars available. Each individual taxpayer will be happy with their individual choices — politicians, they can go suck rocks. Next year, if taxpayers don’t like this or that program’s performance, taxpayers could choose differently. Floundering programs could do what markets do a lot better better than politicians — merge or die… Successful programs (getting more tax dollars) might expand…

Plus, it will be hard for politicians to take this power away from the people. The trend may be to expand it so taxpayers have more, not less. say in how their tax dollars are spent in the various social marketplaces.

It’s all part of a common sense application of the Takings Clause of the 5th which states there’s a Constitutional requirement that property taken (tax dollars) is entitled to ‘just compensation’. There’s nothing in the 16th Amendment that overrides the Takings Clause in the 5th. It’s just conveniently ignored because, well, politicians need to be able to spend money to buy votes with other people’s money without providing just compensation to those who they get the money from…. Or so the story goes…

Don’t worry, these sorts of common sense perspectives apparently aren’t contagious. Feel free to contemplate…

drfredc on April 5, 2011 at 1:05 PM

ajacksonian on April 5, 2011 at 12:54 PM

Thanks for the Reply, but can you remember when the actual shut-down happened? I’m trying to push back against the “soldiers won’t get paid” meme, because I have seen it all over the place from people claiming to be serving now. I’m pretty sure that I am correct when I contend that active duty Military will still get paid….they are federal employees, and none are getting furloughs. Maybey some civillian contractors won’t be there to provide services, but that is nothing to cry about. Any critical services will be performed as needed by Military personnel. That which isn’t critical is simply a luxury.

I suspect that I probably joined after the shutdown got resolved, but I don’t know for sure. What I am sure of is I never heard any horror stories about life in the military during a Gov shutdown. If you have ever served, you would know that stories of hardship are the most popular ones to brag about enduring.

Mord on April 5, 2011 at 1:05 PM

Mord on April 5, 2011 at 1:05 PM

1995 If memory serves. I was a Fed. worker and never missed a check.

Les in NC on April 5, 2011 at 1:09 PM

Les in NC on April 5, 2011 at 1:09 PM

Thank you! So it is all BS, trying to play on the way people feel about our military.

Mord on April 5, 2011 at 1:17 PM

Look at this outrageous graph on food stamps and tell me there isn’t lots of room to make further cuts: Obama’s “Economic Recovery” in Graph Form

We need to take another look at the way Giuliani brought down skyrocketing welfare programs in New York City.

slickwillie2001 on April 5, 2011 at 1:18 PM

slickwillie2001 on April 5, 2011 at 1:18 PM

This is part of Obama’s plan. The more people who rely on the govt for survival the better. Every one of those 14M food stamp recipients is now a life long Democrat voter.
Welfare recipients are like taxes. They’re never temporary.

And once on you’re one govt program, you’re on all of them. These same 14M have Medicaid, WIC, heating assistance, Section 8 and the rest.

angryed on April 5, 2011 at 1:44 PM

Slowburn on April 5, 2011 at 1:02 PM

If I’ve read correctly, DOD ‘cuts’ wouldn’t take effect until the fall.
I could be wrong.
I actually LIKE being able to use this comeback with my uber-lib peeps.
“THEY ARE CUTTING DOD !!”
Those folks wouldn’t believe me, or bother to look any further, but at least I can speak truth to lies… Hehe.

pambi on April 5, 2011 at 2:09 PM

If it all shuts down,
I won’t blame Republicans…
I will credit them.

Haiku Guy on April 5, 2011 at 3:37 PM

Does anyone know if Ryan’s plan will include federal headcount cuts? There’s real potential there, both in present costs and the savings in avoiding their gold-plated pensions and retired healthcare.

Government employees are not productive, they add very little to the economy, and do not add wealth to our nation. We need to look at them as a necessary overhead that has to be kept to an absolute bare minimum.

slickwillie2001 on April 5, 2011 at 3:43 PM

What about Obamacare funding?

clement on April 5, 2011 at 5:40 PM